Yep, you read that right. I’m pregnant at 44. I found out I was pregnant 4 days before my 44th birthday. While I’ve always wanted kids, I truly thought the door was closing on the opportunity for me to become a biological mother. So I prayed and asked God to allow me to either accept what was inevitable or to give me another opportunity to carry and care for a child.
EMOTIONS OF BEING PREGNANT AT 44
When I found out I was pregnant, I’d like to say I was immediately ecstatic. I can honestly say that was not the emotion that I was feeling. I was more petrified and nervous because of what happened just the year before. In June of 2020, just 4 months after I’d gotten married, I got pregnant naturally. I was over the moon excited! I told family, close friends and was brimming with joy to share the news.
Little did I realize that it would not end well. Shortly after sharing the news with my middle sister I had my first appointment at 8 weeks. I was so excited because friends told me that I’d be able to hear the heartbeat by then. As I sat on the table with my doctor doing the ultrasound, I quickly realized that something wasn’t right. She was having a hard time finding the yolk sac and she did not see nor hear any heartbeat. As a precaution, she told me to schedule a follow up ultrasound appointment at the lab where they had better equipment. After that appointment my doctor called me and confirmed my fears. No heartbeat. This pregnancy would result in a miscarriage.
The heartache I felt was indescribable. I felt my heart had been ripped out and I truly just wanted to crawl into bed and never see daylight again. A moment that will be etched in my brain forever and that I relive frequently.
Now that you have context, you understand why when I found out the news, I was hesitant to be happy. The what if’s danced around in my head…what if this ended like the last time? What if I never become a mom? What if, what if, what if. Not to mention, when I got pregnant this second time around, it was almost to the exact date as the previous year. So the sense of deja vu was uncanny.
One day a friend of mine shared a sermon with me that was titled I am Number 12. The message was clear, your past does not define you, there are always exceptions to the rule and what happens to “them” does not dictate and determine what happens to me. Those were all things I needed to not only hear, but hold onto as I started this journey again.
BABY HART HEARTBEAT
So with hope and nervousness in my heart, I scheduled an appointment with my OBGYN to confirm the pregnancy. By drawing bloodwork they confirmed that indeed I was pregnant, but given I was only about 4 weeks along they held off on an ultrasound until I was closer to 8 weeks. Once I hit the 8 week mark, I had my first ultrasound appointment. I was truly hopeful at that appointment because this pregnancy FELT different. Unlike the last pregnancy where I didn’t really have any of those first trimester symptoms, this pregnancy was definitely hitting me differently. I constantly felt like I was seasick and the level of exhaustion was real. I could sleep for 12 hours, wake up, eat and that was enough activity for me to want a nap.
My husband and I walked in the ultrasound room and as the dr moved the wand around, I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was holding my breath. Until we all saw that tiny little bean on the screen. Next, the dr flipped a switch and I heard the strongest, loudest heartbeat I’d ever heard. I immediately broke down into tears. This time, it was tears of joy. My little bean had a heartbeat! I was so many things in that moment, relieved, shocked, scared, you name it. I knew at the time that there were many more milestones to go. You see, when you get pregnant naturally at 44 (what is considered advanced maternal age), doctors will continue to remind you of the risks involved not only for mom but for the child as well.
However in that moment, just for a second, I allowed myself to feel. To feel joy, hope, and love.